Friday, August 10, 2007

Hike: Tri-Corner Knob Shelter

5/12/98--Tri-Corner Knob Shelter, 55.6 miles from Fontana, 219.1 from Springer

10% of the Trail completed today. It was a beautiful day, too, not too long to go, not too hard to hike, and stunning views for my efforts. Got off to a late start b/c I loafed around camp, enjoying breakfast in the unbelievable warm sunshine. Not much else to report, though--life was beautiful, the living was easy. I can tell the story of yesterday's lunch, tho'--I cooked me some ramen at Mt. Collins Shelter. The shelter squirrel, working the day shift to the shelter mice's night shift, decided it was interesting and came to watch. I told him--or her--to go away, in various terms--he or she would back off, then approach once more, and so it went until, as I was packing up she or he approached my chocolate. I threw small sticks at it, which only worked once because it could see that I didn't intend to hurt it. I went over and shooed it to a corner. It once again approached my dessert. It took a piece and scurried off--I told it "no," I harbored unworthy thoughts that chocolate would prove as fatal to squirrels as to dogs. I lamented that this particular chocolate--sent to me in a maildrop from a friend in England--should contain hazelnuts, undoubtedly appealing to a shelter squirrel. At last, I returned to my packing, having protected my remaining sweets. The squirrel, well-fed and unpoisoned, returned. I threw larger sticks, with no more lethal aim than before. It continued towards my foodbag even though this now meant approaching quite close to me. This was too cheeky, so I took a deep breath and hissed, loudly. Suddenly, the squirrel couldn't get away from me fast enough.

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